Monday, April 8, 2013

The GRE-What-Now? at UT Tyler


      One of the most important tests a person can take on their path to obtaining a Masters Degree is the Graduate Record Examination, ie: The GRE. This test is a vital component with the transition between Undergraduate and Graduate Programs, however there is a lot of information to know.



   Having just finished the GRE today, I hope that imparting some of what I went through will be beneficial for your future. Whatever you hear, don't worry, study hard, and talk to people.

   OPENING SCENE: An Undergraduate student is finishing up his final semester. He sits in a couch in the lobby of his department, his laptop opened to different schools. The future is before him!

STUDENT
Man, I wonder what I need to do to get into these awesome school!

All of a sudden, Michael, the blogging Not-quite-a-Grad-Student-not-quite-an-Undergrad appears.

MICHAEL
Hello, [Student Name Here]!

STUDENT
Oh, wow! You're Michael, the student blogger! I've read your blogs like this one, this one, or this one!

MICHAEL
Why thank you! But really, I am here about you! I see you are looking at different colleges?

STUDENT
Yea, I am. The problem is, I have no clue what to do! 

MICHAEL
Well, in addition to contacting the college you like and arranging to look at their campus, you might need to take something called the GRE.

STUDENT
What is that?

MICHAEL
A horrible form of torture devised by The Desolate One to punish those who were naughty in a previous life!

The students face goes pale and his eyes grow wide with horror, as if a whole new universe of pain has been glimpsed in his minds eye.



MICHAEL
Okay, so that is what SOME people might say the GRE is, but here is the reality. It's a comprehensive test meant to measure your aptitude for writing, reading, and understanding mathematical formulas. 

STUDENT
That ... that sounds much better ... I ... I think.

MICHAEL
(laughs)
Well, depends on if you like math or writing essays, eh?

STUDENT
Um ... okay. I am not a big fan of Writing, how much trouble am I in? Am I doomed?

MICHAEL
You might be afraid, but don't worry. Everything will be okay, just look for certain ways to practice and give yourself a few months to study.

STUDENT
Months?!

MICHAEL
(makes a face as if he has smelled something sour)
Yea, look, there is no escaping that the best way to do the best is to take the right amount of time to study. It seems daunting, but don't worry ... you can do it!

STUDENT
So, what do I do? Where do I go to study?

MICHAEL
Well, let's step into my Magical Doorway to Knowledge and I'll show you everything you need!

Michael waves his hands and utters something akin to the Black Speech of Mordor and summons a bizarre doorway-shaped rift in the fabric of the universe.

STUDENT
HOW IN THE ... WHAT IS ... [silent scream]



MICHAEL
(surprised)
You exist in a blog post, dude. Settle down, you'll be okay. With the power of narrative manipulation I can do a lot of things to make this story funny. Like have us go on this journey with a veliciraptor. Say hello, Buttons!

A dapper velociraptor with a gentleman's top-hat appears.

BUTTONS
Tally-hoe!



   Okay, so ... what to use to study? Well, first check to see if your required Department of Interest ( like, say, English ) wants you to take the GRE. Some schools might want you to take the LSAT, or the MAT test. These are all different, so check to see what you need to take, or if they require Subject Tests. 

   Checked? You need the GRE? Okay, hightail it to a Barnes & Nobel, or Amazon.com, and then look for anything by KAPLAN or with the ETS logo. These resources are invaluable because they provide a comprehensive analysis of each section of the GRE. You can also go to this website to get free GRE practice materials. 

   The GRE has three parts: Analytical (Writing), Verbal (Definitions/Word Use), and Quantitative (Math). 

   What you will be taking now is called the Revised GRE. It is called this because Angels from Heaven decided to make some awesome changes to the old GRE test. You can now go back and re-answer some questions and you can have everything done electronically. 

   Each section of the GRE is worth different points. Verbal and Quantitative Sections each have two 20-question sections. These 40 Question sections are each worth 180 points each. 

   EXAMPLE:  Bobby scores a 166 on Verbal ( rather good! ) and a 137 on Quantitative ( Not so great, really ). 

   What about Analytical? Your essays are scores on a scale of 1-6, with 1 being very poor and 6 being outstanding.

   These three sections are looked at together by Graduate Admission Departments in conjunction with your GPA, your recommendation letters, and your statement of purpose. 

   You can also buy a box of Revised GRE-specific word flashcards. These help a lot, but they seem scary. Just remove each word you know from the box and then only study the harder words.

   IMPORTANT --- THE GRE IS NOT *EVERYTHING*, DESPITE WHAT YOU MIGHT THINK ABOUT AS YOU WEEP AT NIGHT, WONDERING WHY THIS HORROR TEST EXISTS.

   To register and find out where you can take the GRE test, go to this website here! You will have to pay 180+ dollars for the test, BUT THERE IS HOPE!

   Go to the Enrollment Services Desk here at UT Tyler and ask about getting a Fee Reduction Form. You will need 4-5 weeks to be able to get the receipt you will need to make the fee only 90 dollars, but if you prep early, it is accomplish-able. 

   It really isn't that bad.

Just give yourself a lot of time to study.

Read the practice books.

Study the flashcards.

Take practice test,

Succeed! 


3 comments:

Priya said...

I read a weblog, I hope that it doesn't sadden me as much as this one. I’m talking about, I know it was my selection to read, but I actually thought you'd have something interesting to say. Great work admin..

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Dhivya Jalendran said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Thamizharasi J said...

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